A Brief History of the World

The following is an excerpt from the author’s forward to A Brief History of the World written by L. N. Bertsaf, a 15th century misanthrope who produced a number of works on history, culture, and government that became popular topics of discussion simply for the exceptionally bleak philosophy of their author.

“Despite the title of this volume, it does very little to illustrate the history of the world in truth. History doesn’t go back to the creation of the world – it hardly so much as conjectures at the beginnings of civilization. For most of that sort of information people generally turn to their faith as few – if any – mortals were busy recording things in such early times, and if they were their writings didn’t survive to the present day. History, in a practical sense, is also not always a matter of what could be known, but what is known. Something may be written in a book somewhere, but if no one read the book then what use is it, really?

So History, in all practical senses, is really just a collection of what people have bothered to know – those facts about the past which have become so ingrained in the modern mind that to not know them is tantamount to proclaiming one’s own idiocy. This is the history which I concern myself with in these pages – those things which one should bother to know."

The following is an outline of major events of history with which most people in most countries are familiar – even if passingly. People are generally more familiar with local history than the history of foreign lands, but as a rule the below are events that most people have probably heard of at some point in their life whether or not they remembered it very well.

Year Event Description
~ (- 550) Destruction of the Dwarven Civilization The network of Dwarven City-States which comprised the most powerful and wide-reaching civilization in known history was destroyed through a series of civil wars and invasions from Elven armies centered around conflict generated by a popular Dwarven cult. Almost every dwarf in the known world died in the wars.
- 400 to – 25 Rapid increase in the human population and the spread of human-centric cultures In the power vacuum created by the destruction of the dwarven civilization the previously suppressed and powerless human cultures began to expand rapidly and grow in power and presence. Conflicts between tribes and clans slowed progress as every group vied for individual power and territory.
- 24 Karim’s Conquest The Karim family conquers the majority of the Bali Desert and establishes an imperial dynasty to rule from the city of Lalsim.
0 “On the Revolution and Progression of Time” First completion and circulation of a text written by Nada Karim, fifth son of the warlord who conquered the Bali Desert. The text revolutionizes the philosophy of time, and inspires the creation of a new calendar system – the Nadan calendar. The success of Nada Karim is so inspiring to his people that they eventually name their empire, their calendar, and even their homeland after him.
~ 320 Invasion of Enchi The Nada’Ath Empire grows so strong that it successfully invades the region known as Enchi, conquering its cities and subjecting its people to the Nada’Athi culture and religion.
457 First Invasion of Sef The Empire attempts yet another large-scale invasion against a land known as Sef. However a coalition of kings halts the invading armies in two swift battlefield defeats.
~ 588 First conquest of Sef The most powerful city in the lands of Sef leads a war campaign that leads to the successful conquest of several other cities, including the influential port city of Huelin.
~ 600 Foundation of Golir After a long series of wars and political dramatics between several cities in some of the most fertile land north of the Merchant Sea, an accord is struck establishing the Kingdom of Golir.
~ 725 Second Invasion of Sef The Nada’Ath Empire makes a second attempt at an invasion of Sef by establishing a military outpost east of Huelin in order to besiege the city from land and sea. Unforutnately the Nada’Athi claim to the lands east of Huelin is highly contested by the native Plokar tribe.
813 Foundation of Keland Through an alliance signed by several of the more progressive and removed tribes of the lands essentially positioned between Golir and Sef, the Kingdom of Keland is formed.
815 Third Invasion of Sef The Empire finally makes a successful invasion of Huelin, and through the control it exerts over the commerce in Sef effectively split the nation in half.
877 First Invasion of Golir The Empire stages its first attempt at an invasion of Golir from the lands of Enchi, which is ultimately unsuccessful.
~ 930 Second Conquest of Sef After a century of strained politics and occasional military clashes, The Nada’Ath Empire conquers the entire nation of Sef.
~ 1000 Second Invasion of Golir Imperial forces stationed in Enchi once again attempt to invade the nation of Golir, but are withdrawn when a Golirian naval blockade stagnates the flow of gold, iron, and luxury goods to the wealthy Enchi governors from the Nada’Fan.
~1150 to ~1161 Tarket invasion of Keland The Tarket tribe, citing the now centurys-old conversion of the people of Keland to faith in the One True God, attempts to invade the kingdom of Keland to no avail.
1171 to 1219 Nada’Athi Empire enacts campaign of subversion along Enchi border with Golir Through the funding of bandit groups and mercenary camps, the Nada’Athi empire sets about creating a standing state of conflict between the Kingdom of Golir and the people of the Enchi region. Even after the nature and source of these activities came to light and was resolved via treaty, the threat of banditry along the Golir / Enchi border remains incredibly high for decades to come.
1227 First founding of the Saricel School of Wizardry in Lisil Foundation of one of the fastest growing and most respected schools of wizardry in its time, predecessor of the Academy Arcanum.
1237 to 1242 Keland at conflict with Lisil The provincial governor of Lisil, secretly a supporter of the Wraith King, attempts repeatedly to invade, undermine, and generally disrupt the Kingdom of Keland, which is aided in part by its northern, millenia-dormant, elven neighbors.
1242 to 1243 Elven Goblin War The Goblin Nation, inhabiting the Dark Woods at the time, began to wage war on the elves of the Olu Lansi, and eventually on Keland as well.
1243 Spring Yurikamilish becomes the Wraith King A wave of black clouds bringing strange weather events, including the occasional sighting of black lightning strikes, washes over the entire world after the dragon Yurikamilish steals the power of a Duke of Asmod and takes over the mantle of rulership in his stead, signaling the beginning of the Planar War.
1243 Summer Safir Abdul Karim rises to power A coup occurs within the Karim family, removing the almost tyrannical Habar Karim and putting in place his eldest son Safir Abdul Karim who signs treaties with Keland and Golir aimed especially at ensuring mutual protection in the face of extra-planar threats.
1243 Summer Invasion in Musai The city of Musai is held against the invasion forces of Asmod due to the intervention of a force of celestials and a group of individuals who come to be referred to as the Heroes of the Planar War.
1243 Summer Invasion in Golir The capital city of Golir is invaded by the forces of Asmod making their way out of The Chasm. The city holds against the attack again due to the intervention of the Heroes. However the following night King Saul Elward of Keland, recently revealed to be a dragon, dies at the hands of Yurikamilish.
1243 Autumn Assasination attempts against the Tisids The ruling family of Golir is targeted by no fewer than a half dozen assassins and doppelgangers in an attempt by Asmodian forces to weaken mortal resistance and resolve. The majority of the plots are defeated due to the intervention of the Heros.
1244 Early Winter Invasion and Cession of the 3rd Dukedom of Asmod With the support of several wizards borrowed from the Golir Royal Tower of Mages and a small distraction force loosed into the near-by city, the Heroes of the Planar War mount an almost suicidal mission to rescue a captured member of the Tisid family and attempt to destroy Yurikamilish. Miraculously the mission is successful, but the powers of the Wraith King are inherited by one of the heroes who cedes the territory to the forces of celestia and dedicates himself to preventing future invasions of the Mortal Realm from Asmod.
1244 Founding of the Academy Arcanum Re-founded after the death of its previous founder and headmaster, and quickly becomes the leading place for arcane study in the known world, beginning what historians refer to as the Renaissance Arcana.
~ 1305 Norten Tribe eliminated Conflicts with the Nada’Athi empire lead to an invasion of Norten territory that is only eventually halted by the peaceful influx of the Khalram tribe.
1347 to 1371 The Giant Wars A tribe of giants from the tundras of the north wage war on the elves of the Olu Lansi in an attempt to conquer their territory. Attempting to out-strip the giant’s boulder-throwing abilities an elven engineer popularizes mortar cannon as long-range siege weapons.
1413 Confederated Tribes of the Selkir Formed After centuries of battling and negotiating, the Jortus tribe finally convinces the Boreen – along with several smaller tribes – to join them in a confederation.
1491 Ptolzi A Brafnen discovered Kefran spelunkers and naturalists discover the entrance to Ptolzi A Brafnen and make first contact with the last remnant of the ancient Dwarven Civilization.
1500 City States of Leiln founded The 13 city states of the Leiln islands and surrounding Naelic Ocean islands first formed together as a nation.
1501 – 1517 Xio-Shin Monarchy formed The kingdoms of Wuen, Fo, Xio, and Lu Paei engaged in a sixteen-year war for control of their combined territories. The Xio were victorious, exiling the Lu Paei and erradicating the Wuen and Fo.
~1509 Lu Paei family conquers the Obsidian Isles Exiled from their homeland, the Lu Paei family flees to the Obsidian Isles, where their military forces quickly over-power the mostly peaceful trading islands.
1511 Lu Paei Invasion of the Nada’Fan The Lu Paei family invades the Nada’Fan through a clever distraction and superb battlefield execution, and seizes control of Lalsim. Noteworthy in this action is the pervasive use of firearms in defeating the heavily armored Nada’Athi elite soldiers.
~1517 Lu Paei settled as new rulers of Nada’Ath Empire Within six years of taking Lalsim the Lu Paei family have negotiated treaties with every existing city and governance within the empire to establish themselves as the new imperial line in the Nada’Fan. The Obsidian Isles become the newest governance of the empire.
~1550 Kiyi-Jini-Antu formed The Kiyi tribe of the Yiji-Antu jungle conquers half the territory of the jungle and declares themselves supreme rulers of the jungle and its coast lands. Over the course of a half-dozen or so years other nations begin to recognize this new political structure, and in time the reach of the Kiyi extends until it actually does cover essentially the entire jungle.
1611 The Holy States Formed Upon the retirement of King Saul Elward II of Keland and Queen Helena Ariana Tisid of Golir, High King Nathanial the Just inherits both thrones, appointing his cousin Tidiolkras to be steward of Keland under his ultimate rulership.
1622 East-Sea Alliance Formed Signed by the leaders of Kefran in a desperate measure to discourage Nada’Athi invasion, the East-Sea Alliance takes form between Kefran and Leiln, later to add Ptolzi A Brafnen and Kiyi-Jini-Antu.
1623 – 1635 The Pirate Wars Spear-headed by the powerful Golirian navy, the allied forces of several Merchant Sea nations set out to eradicate the numerous pirate groups plaguing the Merchant Sea. The war effort, expected to take two to three years, drags on for almost twelve years before it is finally declared “successful.”

A Brief History of the World

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